back to article IBM helps Chicago keep an eye on its citizens

Next time you're in Chicago, say cheese. Chances are good your likeness will be captured on a futuristic video surveillance system the city is rolling out with the help of IBM and several other tech companies. Today, officials from Chicago and IBM announced the initial phase of Operation Virtual Shield, which they're …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Do they work even for muggings/knifings?

    "I don't really care if it reduces crime, but if it will catch the bugger who has just mugged me, or stolen my car or knifed me, I'd say that the cameras are serving their purpose."

    Do they work even for that? UK violent crime continues to rise and UK is one of the most monitored countries.

    Only thing I notice is fewer people out on the streets, especially at night.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ Roger de Laborde

    remember the poor sod whose shop was robbed? A camera was pointing right at the front and must have recorded the ne'r-do-well. When he requested the footage he was asked for the exact time when the burglary took place. As it happend in the night he didn't know hence no check of footage.

    Has a camera ever prevented a crime? Did it ever thwart an assissin, took his knife and restrained him until the police arrives?

    Call for cameras when you are dead!


    (bugger! I've just been taken in by a troll)

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    RE: CCTV

    Ok call me stupid but to defeat CCTV dont you just have to pull your hood up a bit more?

  4. Ben W

    partial improvment but..........

    You need to tag everyone with a chip its, the only fulproof way!

    there'll be bla bla bla human rights and bla bla bla personnal privacy but that will only last untill everyone has been robbed, mugged, raped or killed then they'll be complaining because something wasn't done about it!!!

    Combine ID-chips with chip-scanning CCTV and hey presto crime free or atleast less crime, with it being illegal to remove the chips anyone without one is a criminal and everyone with one can be tracked or traced. obvoiusly there would have to be strict regulation on what reasons and purposes the system was used for perhaps with police having the option of hand held scanners.

    Or not?!?!..........

  5. Lars Petersson

    @ Ben W

    I totally agree that it's the way forwards.

    Personally I would go further than that, but I'm sadly surrounded by the bleeding-heart liberals who would rather uphold the rights of criminals than the rights of law abiding citizens to not be victims of crime.

  6. EvilGav


    Nice to see IBM moving with the times, keeping up with the latest technology for tracking people.

    I mean, it's what they helped the Nazi's with in the second world war . . .

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    It constantly amazes me that people think that CCTV prevents crime, when they see lots of CCTV footage of crime on the telly.

    How can CCTV prevent crime, if you see footage on the telly of crime, filmed by CCTV. Duh!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @some pre-posters

    I have just learned where the leaders of the GDR have been hiding all the years - they are gathering now in The Register's comment section. Yes, the GDR was democratic as well, as it says in its name. Sure. And safe.


  9. Dave

    Hitler would be proud

    I see the Gestapo is in full force in Chicago. What an asshole country this is turning into. I've already made my plans for escape.

  10. Donna

    They're not just ads anymore

    I have to assume this is live feed only because keeping tape recordings would be prohibitive, so the point would be what?

    Those of you "if you have nothing to hide, you shouldn't care" people need a smack with a cluex4. We're on our way to a society best portrayed in the Vonnegut book "Harrison Bergeron." Get your head out of your asses. You're part of the problem.

  11. Donna


    I can't wait until you're arrested because you bear an uncanny resemblance to the man caught molesting a little boy. Maybe then you can ask the bleeding heart liberals to defend your sorry ass.

    As to my previous post, That title is from a post I wrote ages ago and Opera's wand feature seems to have kept it. Ugh.

  12. DAN*tastik

    RE: Do they work even for muggings/knifings?

    ... Do they work even for that? UK violent crime continues to rise

    With cameras you know who did it. Not exactly a deterrent - My opinion

    Donating the criminal's organs to who needs them most, or using them for vivisection would probably do the trick. Again, my opinion. But nobody can say i am wrong until a 2 years trial is carried out. My opinion

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re. Partial improvement

    The problem with your logic is that by giving any organization that much power, there must be accountability. And that is impossible, as you will never prevent corruption at the highest levels and dishonest officials (or merely unbalanced extremists that managed to rise to power) will use this for their personal agendas. Soon you will end up with a society where there is no tolerance, where if you make the mistake of jaywalking or spitting on the sidewalk, you will be dealt with harshly by a megalomaniac prosecutor who has a personal axe to grind. You could argue that at least everyone would be treated equally, but the truth is that everyone would just be forced to conform or pay the penalty. Eventually a nasty rebellion would ensue to reset things to the proper levels. Like a raging forest fire occurring because natural burns are repressed and the tinder just builds up. A little anarchy and anonymity is necessary for a functioning, self-cleansing society. (IMHO)

  14. Chris Goodchild

    Allo allo allo wot's all this then?

    A commonly touted reason for the proliferation of increasing surveillance technology is that it helps to reduce crime and frees the copper on the street to concentrate on more important things ( coffee? doughnuts? harrassing motorists? chasing joyriding kids to the detriment of pedestrians?). So , the question is, how many cops would 1000 cameras and the involvement of IBM actually pay for? Or how many bobbies would would all the public surveillance cameras and gatsos provide us with in the UK? Even if they just drove around in Panda cars the way they used to at least there would be some kind of approachable police pesence on the streets in stead of an inscrutable camera up a pole.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The first myth is that cctv prevents crime, the second is that anyone is watching them. If you replace people with cameras be prepared to watch rather than do anything about crime after the fact when the software flags it.

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